Sourcing Strategy: 8 Steps for Recruitment

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In the 🌌 competitive world of recruitment, developing an effective sourcing strategy is becoming an imperative for every recruiter and HR professional keen to capture the best talent.

It’s about implementing a thoughtful, systematic approach to discovering, attracting and engaging the most promising individuals.

So whether you’re just starting out in recruitment or looking for ways to fine-tune your approach, you’ve come to the right place. 😎

The 8 stages of a sourcing strategy:

  • 1️⃣ Understand the company’s needs.
  • 2️⃣ Define ideal candidate profiles.
  • 3️⃣ Identify effective sourcing channels.
  • 4️⃣ Plan your communication strategy.
  • 5️⃣ Use advanced search techniques.
  • 6️⃣ Use application management software.
  • 7️⃣ Activate the professional network.
  • 8️⃣ Analyze and adjust results if necessary.

How do you define a talent sourcing strategy?

Nowadays, defining a sourcing strategy is more than necessary, as it’s a must-have for any recruiter or HR professional looking to unearth the rare pearl. 👀

If you don’t already know what sourcing is, it’s a research process for recruitment, and aims to identify 🔎 precise profiles that meet a list of criteria identified upstream by the company.

Without further ado, we explain the two steps you need to take before developing your strategy! 😇


Identify your company’s needs

The first step is to play detective within your own company. You need to know exactly what you need!

You can do the following:

  • Take stock with the teams ➡️ start by talking to managers and teams to understand the holes in their ranks.
  • Ask the following questions ➡️ which positions are vacant? What are the upcoming projects, and what specific talents will be needed to carry them out?
  • Analyze trends ➡️ don’t just fill vacancies, think ahead. Anticipating your company’s needs will give you a head start in the talent hunt.
  • Evaluate your corporate culture and employer branding ➡️ Technical skills are great, but finding someone who matches perfectly the spirit of your company is even better.
  • Set clear objectives ➡️ set clear, measurable recruitment objectives, such as how many positions you need to fill, by when, and what skill level you want.

Now that you’ve prepared the ground, you can define the profiles you’re looking for! 👀


Define the profiles you’re looking for

Once you’ve identified your company’s precise needs, the next step is to precisely define the profiles of the candidates you’re looking for. 🏹

It’s a bit like drawing a sketch 🤖 of your ideal future collaborator.

Here are a few tips to avoid shooting off target 🎯 :

  • 📋 Make a list of the technical skills you’ll need: mastering specific software, having cutting-edge knowledge in a strategic business unit, language skills – every detail counts.
  • 💟 Don’t neglect soft skills: human and relational qualities can make all the difference to team dynamics. The ability to work in a team, resilience, creativity, leadership.
  • 🫱🏽‍🫲🏼 Think about cultural fit: a candidate may be exceptional on paper, but may not share your company’s values. Determine the personality traits and values that match the spirit of your company.
  • 💬 Develop attractive, accurate job descriptions: write job descriptions that detail the challenges of the role and can attract quality candidates.

With well-defined profiles, you’re ready to cast your nets 🥅 and capture the talent that will make a difference to your business.

8 Steps to a Successful Sourcing Strategy Recruitment

Now that you’ve understood why you need to implement your sourcing strategy, it’s time to take action. 💥

Ready, set, go! 🏎️

1) Understand the company’s needs

A thorough understanding of the company’s needs requires close collaboration with managers and team leaders to immediately understand the skills needed, but not only those that will be crucial for present and future projects. 💭

By clearly defining your needs, you’ll be able to target your search for candidates not only on technical skills, but also on personal qualities and values that match the spirit of the company. And that’s crucial! 👀

Moreover, it’s essential to assess your work environment, current and future challenges, as well as the company culture and working atmosphere.

Let’s take the example of a fast-growing technology company specializing in the development of cybersecurity solutions. 🛜

This company anticipates a significant expansion of its operations over the coming months, with the launch of new products and entry into new markets. 👀

To support this growth, the company must not only strengthen its development and sales teams, but also anticipate the skills that will accompany its new projects! 💪🏼

Here is a small table of these needs: 👇🏼

Candidate profileKey skills required
Front-End DeveloperJavaScript, React, Vue.js, ability to work in a team, communication skills
Sales ManagerSaaS sales, negotiation, account management, results orientation
Cybersecurity SpecialistNetwork security, vulnerability analysis, security certifications (e.g., CISSP)


2) Define ideal candidate profiles

This time, it’s a bit like drawing the treasure map 🏴‍☠️ that leads to the jewels in your company’s crown: the talents that will make all the difference.

Here are some key tips on how to recruit your future champions: ⬇️

Specific technical skills.

Identify non-negotiable technical skills for each position. From mastery of specific web development frameworks to in-depth knowledge of certain financial regulations, every detail counts.

Universal soft skills.

Never underestimate the power of soft skills! The ability to work in a team, resilience, creativity, and leadership are essential.

Cultural appropriateness.

A candidate who embraces your company’s culture is, in a way, everyone’s goal. To achieve this, determine the personality traits and values that align with the spirit of your company.

Professional experience.

Experience is often a sign of competence and adaptability. To that end, specify the desired level of experience, but keep an open mind. Some people can have an atypical background and be a gem! 💟

Growth potential.

A willingness to learn and the ability to grow with the company are indicators of a successful long-term investment.

By following our advice, you will (I hope), find the rare pearl 👀.


3) Identify effective sourcing channels

Identifying effective sourcing channels 🔎 it’s like finding the right fishing spots where fish abound, you can’t go wrong if you want results. 😇

There are several avenues, or rather channels, open to you:

  • 🟣 Professional social networks.
  • 🔵 Specialized platforms.
  • 🟣 Specialized platforms.
  • 🔵 Trade shows and conferences.
  • 🟣 Universities and specialized schools.
  • 🔵 Online forums and groups.

Sourcing strategy example

What better way to show you why and how to identify effective sourcing channels for a marketing company than with a little chart! ⬇️

Sourcing channelsBenefits
Professional social networks (e.g., LinkedIn)Access to a wide range of communications professionals, easy to target.
Specialized platforms (e.g., Behance, Dribbble)Ideal for finding creatives and design specialists with impressive portfolios.
Trade shows and communication conferencesOpportunity to meet professionals with a passion for communications and marketing.
Employee referral programsSource of pre-qualified candidates who already have an affinity with the company’s culture.
Communication and marketing job boardsReach candidates actively seeking opportunities in the communications sector.
Universities and communication schoolsAccess to talented students ready to contribute innovative ideas and fresh energy.
Communication forums and online groupsEngaging with enthusiastic professionals who are informed about the latest trends.


4) Plan your communication strategy

What’s involved in planning a communications strategy? 🤔

Well, choosing the right messages and broadcasting them on the most appropriate channels to reach 🎯 your ideal candidates.

Here are our tips: 👇🏼

  • 1️⃣ Define your key message: start by clarifying the message you want to convey to your potential candidates. Then make sure your message reflects your company’s values and speaks directly to your potential candidates’ desires!
  • 2️⃣ Personalize communication: whether through employee success stories, presentations of exciting projects or testimonials on company culture, show candidates how they can thrive within your organization.
  • 3️⃣ Choose the right channels: professional social networks like LinkedIn are perfect for experienced professionals, while Instagram or TikTok may be more appropriate for reaching young creative talent.
  • 4️⃣ Plan an integrated campaign: combine posts on social networks, emailing campaigns, blog content on your website and event participation to create multiple points of contact with your potential candidates.
  • 5️⃣ Measure and adjust: use data to understand what’s working and what’s not with your campaigns. Email open rates, traffic to your site’s career pages and engagement on social networks are indicators that can help you.

By fine-tuning your communications strategy, you’ll increase your chances of attracting the talent that will make the difference in your business. 🔥

Psst, remember how you could use LinkedIn as a professional social network? What if I told you that with Waalaxy, our LinkedIn automation tool, you could also find candidate emails and go cross-channel?


5) Use advanced search techniques

If you’re stagnating in your search, you can use Boolean search. This method effectively refines and targets 🏹 candidate searches by combining keywords with logical operators such as “and”, “or”, “Not”.

You don’t understand how to use it? Don’t worry, I’ll explain. ⬇️

The first step is to master the use of Boolean operators:

  • “And” allows you to combine terms so that the results contain all specific keywords.
  • “Or” expands the search to candidates matching any of the terms used.
  • “Not” excludes specific terms from your search, which is useful for filtering out irrelevant results.

Then, for more exact expressions, enclose them in quotation marks.

For example, “front-end developer” will provide results exclusively for this role.

Thereafter, remember to use brackets. For example, you may be searching for candidates with experience in Java or PhP, but not in Python.

In this case, you can write: (Java OR Php), NOT Python.

💡 Note that Boolean search is not an exact science and often requires fine-tuning.


6) Use application management software (ATS software)

It’s essential to integrate application management software, also known as ATS (Applicant Tracking System) software, into your sourcing strategy.

It not only simplifies the reception and sorting of applications by automatically filtering profiles according to predefined criteria, but also provides an overview of each candidate’s career path.

But that’s not all:

  • 👥 Automated sorting of applications.
  • 💬 Enhanced candidate experience.
  • 📊 Data-driven sourcing strategy optimization.
  • 🫱🏽‍🫲🏼 Easier collaboration between recruiters and managers.
  • 👀 Maintaining a talent pool.
  • 📖 Regulatory compliance.

We have made a small selection of 3 ATS software just for your beautiful eyes 👀 :

Greenhouse.

Known for its intuitive user interface and advanced candidate tracking features, Greenhouse helps companies optimize every aspect of their recruitment process. It offers :

  • 🟢 Interview planning.
  • 🟢 Candidate evaluation.
  • 🟢 Data analysis to continuously improve recruitment strategies.
sourcing strategy

Lever.

What sets this tool apart is its ability to facilitate collaboration between recruitment teams and managers.

What makes it special?

It integrates a recruitment CRM to build relationships with candidates even before they apply, and offers detailed reporting features to track recruitment performance. 📊

Workday recruiting.

Workday offers an ATS solution integrated with a human resources management system (HRIS), making applicant tracking and recruitment management a seamless part of HR management.

Its strength? The integration of recruitment processes with other HR functions, facilitating an 👀 overview of each candidate’s steps.


7) Activate your professional network

This penultimate approach relies on leveraging existing connections and developing new relationships to access a wider pool of potential candidates. 🔥

Engaging your network means soliciting internal referrals, but also attending industry events, conferences and professional meetings. 😇

Using professional social networks to share career opportunities can attract talent looking for a new company aligned with their values. 💟

A little recap, you can keep in a corner! 👇🏼

StrategyObjectives
Internal recommendationsUse existing employee networks to find qualified candidates.
Participation in eventsMeet industry professionals to expand the company’s network.
Professional social networksEngage a wider audience by sharing corporate opportunities and values.


8) Analyze and adjust results if necessary

This final step enables you to refine 🔪 your recruitment methods based on observed performance, ensuring constant optimization of the process.

Here are a few indicators that I think you may find useful:

  • 🥇Temps to fill a position.
  • 🥈Candidate response rates.
  • 🥉 Retention rate of new employees.

💡 For example, an extended recruitment time might indicate the need to diversify your sourcing channels or improve the visibility of your ads.

Oh, and I almost forgot! Remember to collect feedback from candidates on their experience of the recruitment process, as this can help you in the way you communicate with potential future employees.

How about a recap?

Remember that talent sourcing is an art as much as a science. 🧪

It requires a flexible, creative approach, adapted to constant changes in the job market and technologies.

By implementing these strategies, your company won’t just be filling vacancies, but building a dynamic team capable of meeting tomorrow’s challenges. 💪🏼

Now all you have to do is get started, knowing that every effort you put into fine-tuning your strategy today is an investment in your company’s future. 💟

Frequently asked questions about sourcing strategy

Hop hop hop, don’t go so fast, we’re not done yet! 👀

What is a sourcing plan?

A sourcing plan is a detailed strategy designed to identify, attract and engage the best talent to meet an organization’s recruitment needs.

The plan takes several key elements into account:

  • 🟣 Analysis of recruitment needs.
  • 🔵 Definition of ideal candidate profiles.
  • 🟣 Identifying sourcing channels.
  • 🔵 HR communication and marketing strategies.
  • 🟣 Candidate evaluation and selection.
  • 🔵 Analysis of results and adjustments.


What is the purpose of sourcing?

The main objective of a sourcing strategy is to build a solid pipeline of qualified candidates to effectively meet a company’s current and future recruitment needs. 💪🏼

This reduces the time and costs associated with recruitment, while increasing the quality of hires. 🤩

Now, sourcing strategy holds no secrets for you. 🐉

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